Australia posts zero virus cases, state chief calls for 'Pacific bubble'




By Swati Pandey

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Australia recorded a fourth day of zero coronavirus cases on Thursday, prompting the chief of the country’s most populous state to call for a special travel “bubble” with Pacific island nations.

New South Wales has reined in an outbreak in mid-December that prompted a strict lockdown in Sydney’s Northern Beaches, while broader social distancing rules and mandatory mask wearing were imposed for the rest of the city.

Signalling those restrictions were set to be eased next week, Premier Gladys Berejiklien told the Sydney Morning Herald newspaper the federal government should consider establishing a travel arrangement with the Pacific.

“There is no reason why we shouldns’t aim to travel to New Zealand or some of the Pacific Islands well within the next 12 months,” Berejiklian said.

The comments come after Australia’s chief medical officer Paul Kelly cautioned about restarting international travel, given the country was in an “envious position” compared to most of the world.

Unlike other countries, Australia has closed its international borders, only allowing its stranded citizens back home.

However, the country is still hosting the Australian Open tennis grand slam, with hundreds of players and their entourages arriving each day.

Victoria, home to the Open, recorded its 15th straight day without any local coronavirus cases on Thursday, although as many as 72 players are in hard quarantine after some passengers on three charter flights carrying them to Melbourne tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

Tennis coach Daniel Vallverdu told Reuters that players in hard quarantine and unable leave their hotels to practice, should later get preferential treatment from organisers such as prime practice times and matches scheduled in the cooler hours of the day.

READ  Man stabbed to death in northwest London - police

Australia has reported more than 22,000 local COVID-19 cases and 909 deaths since the pandemic began.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.





READ SOURCE

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here